How to Change a Drill Bit on a Drill: A Step-by-Step Guide

Video how to get drill bit out of drill

If you’re a DIY enthusiast or a professional, knowing how to change a drill bit is an essential skill. Whether you own a Milwaukee, DeWalt, Black & Decker, Craftsman, Ryobi, or any other brand, the process is quite similar. In this article, we’ll guide you through changing drill bits and provide helpful tips along the way.

How to Change a Drill Bit on a Drill: A Step-by-Step Guide

How to Change a Drill Bit on a Drill with a Keyless Chuck

Most modern drills come with a keyless chuck, making the process of changing drill bits quick and easy. Follow these steps:

  1. Hold the drill with the chuck pointing away from you.
  2. Spin the chuck counterclockwise to loosen the jaws.
  3. Once the chuck is wide enough, insert the new drill bit.
  4. Tighten the chuck by spinning it clockwise until it begins to resist.
  5. For drills with a ratcheting mechanism, you’ll feel and hear clicks as the jaws tighten around the bit.
  6. To remove a drill bit, simply turn the chuck clockwise until it releases the bit.

Keyless Chuck

Pro Tip: If the newly installed drill bit wobbles when you use the drill, ensure that the teeth of the chuck are properly engaging the bit. Loosen the chuck, reposition the bit, and then tighten it again.

How to Remove a Stuck Bit From a Keyless Chuck

Sometimes, the chuck can become tight and make it difficult to loosen the drill bit. In such cases, follow these steps:

  1. Grab a pair of adjustable pliers (Channellocks) and adjust them to fit the outside of the chuck.
  2. Use the additional leverage from the pliers to help loosen the chuck.
  3. For extra stability, you can lightly clamp the drill in a vice.

Three warnings: Be cautious not to damage plastic chucks or the housing of your drill. Avoid applying excessive force on the chuck, as it can lead to damage. Additionally, never try to loosen the chuck by clamping it in a vice and pulling the trigger. This can cause the drill to whip around and potentially result in injury.

How to Change a Drill Bit on a Drill with a Keyed Chuck

Although most modern drills feature keyless chucks, there are still some models with keyed chucks. Here’s how to change the drill bit in a keyed chuck:

  1. Place the tip of the drill’s key into the matching hole on the chuck.
  2. Give it a slight turn to align the teeth.
  3. Turn the key clockwise to loosen the chuck or counterclockwise to tighten it.

Keyed Chuck

How to Change a Drill Bit on an Impact Driver/Impact Drill

An impact driver, sometimes referred to as an impact drill, has a different mechanism but the process is still straightforward. Here’s how to change the drill bit on an impact driver:

  1. Instead of a chuck, an impact driver has a collet at the front.
  2. To remove the bit, pull the outer part of the collet out to release the bit.
  3. To install a new bit, simply insert it and release the collet.

Some impact drivers have features that make the process even easier, such as one-hand bit insertion or active bit ejection. These advancements eliminate the need to manually release or handle hot drill or driver bits.

Impact Driver


Q: Can I use the same type of drill bits for all drills?
A: Most drill bits are compatible with various drills, but it’s important to check the specifications and requirements of your specific drill before purchasing new drill bits.

Q: How often should I change my drill bits?
A: The frequency of changing drill bits depends on the intensity and frequency of use. It’s generally recommended to inspect and replace a drill bit if it becomes dull or damaged.

Q: Can I use a drill bit designed for wood on metal?
A: It’s not recommended to use a wood drill bit on metal as it may not be able to withstand the heat and pressure generated during metal drilling. It’s best to use drill bits specifically designed for metal.


Changing drill bits is a fundamental skill for any drill owner. By following the simple steps outlined in this guide, you’ll be able to change drill bits effortlessly and efficiently. Remember to choose the appropriate type of drill bit for your specific drilling needs and always prioritize safety. Happy drilling!

For more information on drills and to explore the best drill press for metal, visit Best Drill Press For Metal.

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